I still think that the EDs for this series are a very nice touch: showing a different classic song from those days really makes this series even more authentic than it already was. It’s one of the few EDs this season that actually tries to add something to its series.
In any case, I really liked this episode. Half of it was about Kouhei, and the other half about Yuuko. Kouhei surprisingly had his best episode so far, which probably had a lot to do with the fact that he wasn’t alone in this episode: his part was about his entire baseball team. The story about bullying was surprisingly well done here, and it was worth seeing all those kids together. As a group, these kids really are a great character here.
Also, it was a nice touch to show an earthquake there. I suspect that this series was talking about the 1964 Niigata Earthquake, of a magnitude of 7.5. Yet again: it’s impressive to see how well the creators are trying to make this series blend in with the actual history, not to mention that it also was a nice touch to show all this through the eyes of a child, who couldn’t grasp the consequences of such a thing yet.
The next two weeks meanwhile will be the remaining two preview episodes, and with this episode everything nicely falls into place. First of all, this episode really shows the events that lead up to Yuuko’s date going wrong. Also, the fact that within two episodes we’re going to skip to the summer holidays really point to the fact that the creators are intending the 1964 Olympics as the finale of this series. A great idea. It’s especially going to be good for Kouhei’s brother: his storyline can’t be wrapped up that quickly, and something tells me that the creators were intending to put more of Yuuko in the first half, and more of him in the second half of this series.
Also, this episode had a slightly different animation style than usual. The drawings were messier, but at the same time there was more movement and the camera angles were much better than usual. I’ve always found that movement and details have a higher priority than consistency, so this is a change that I liked quite a bit. Ideally you’d of course want animation to both have a lot of movement and be crisp at the same time, but Wao World unfortunately doesn’t have the best animators.
On a side-note: that pool! It’s hard to imagine, but were pools in those days always that filthy?
Rating: ** (Excellent)